Japan’s Elderly Citizens Turn To Petty Theft

December 26, 2008

Japan (ChattahBox) – As economic crisis continues in Japan, a new report that was released this week by the Japanese government shows as alarming new statistic: more and more elderly citizens are being forced into petty crime to survive.

More citizens over the age of 65 were found to have been arrested for theft in Hokkaido, the main northern island in Japan, then arrests of youths for any reason in 2006, and the number has continued to grow from there. This phenomenon seems to be directly related to the recent abandonment of many of the elderly as citizens seek further financial stability in a time of recession.

“The main reasons they shoplift are poverty and loneliness,” said Kazuo Kawakami, a former federal prosecutor in Hookaido. “The traditional Japanese family is gone, and now our elderly live alone.”

The number of crimes committed by older generations is expected to increase further over the coming months.


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